Forced clo­sure Bill in­tro­duced

Pilbara News - - News - Tom Zaun­mayr

A Bill to pre­vent the forced clo­sure of re­mote com­mu­ni­ties has been in­tro­duced in Par­lia­ment by Greens Mem­ber for Min­ing and Pas­toral Robin Chap­ple.

The Bill would en­sure con­tin­ued pro­vi­sion of mu­nic­i­pal and es­sen­tial ser­vices by the State Govern­ment to sup­port re­mote Abo­rig­i­nal com­mu­ni­ties.

Speak­ing in Par­lia­ment, Mr Chap­ple said any ac­tion which could re­sult in clo­sures taken without con­sent of res­i­dents, as well as de­ter­rence mea­sures such as in­ad­e­quate ser­vice pro­vi­sion, would be seen as a move to close a com­mu­nity.

“Should a pub­lic au­thor­ity make a de­ci­sion that leads to the forced clo­sure of a re­mote Abo­rig­i­nal com­mu­nity, which in­cludes the in­ad­e­quate pro­vi­sion of mu­nic­i­pal or es­sen­tial ser­vices, the Bill would en­able res­i­dents to ap­ply to the State Ad­min­is­tra­tive Tri­bunal for a re­view of a de­ci­sion to close their com­mu­nity,” he said. There have been con­cerns com­mu­ni­ties would be forced to close un­der the re­gional ser­vice re­form pack­age, a claim the pre­vi­ous govern­ment de­nied on sev­eral oc­ca­sions.

Speak­ing on be­half of Abo­rig­i­nal Af­fairs Min­is­ter Ben Wy­att, La­bor Mem­ber for Min­ing and Pas­toral Re­gion Stephen Daw­son said the State Govern­ment sup­ported the re­gional ser­vices re­form pack­age and the reforms were not in­tended to close Abo­rig­i­nal com­mu­ni­ties.

Robin Chap­ple

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